10/12/2005 11:00PM

Tough task for Running Lass

Running Lass, Manoel Cruz up in the Desert Vixen, will have Jerry Bailey on Saturday.

MIAMI - Running Lass has already won the opening two legs of the filly division of the Florida Stallion Stakes, but even with jockey Jerry Bailey taking the call she may be no better than the public's third choice when she attempts to complete the sweep in Saturday's $400,000 My Dear Girl Stakes at Calder.

led throughout to easily win the six-furlong Desert Vixen Stakes, but has not started since being fully extended to capture the seven-furlong Susan's Girl on Sept. 3. She'll also be asked to carry her abundant speed around two turns for the first time in the 1 1/16-mile My Dear Girl, which attracted 11 juvenile fillies, and figures to have a tough time making the lead with the speedy Stolen Prayer breaking from the rail.

Trainer Angel Salinas has attempted to put a little foundation under Running Lass in the six weeks since her previous start, with a couple of stamina-enhancing one-mile works followed by a bullet half-mile over a muddy track in 48 seconds here last weekend.

Despite the impressive resume of Running Lass, two other fillies figure to attract more mutuel support in the My Dear Girl: California invader Mystery Girl and the much-improved Mia's Reflection, both of whom remain under consideration for the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies.

is rated seventh nationally among 2-year-old fillies in Daily Racing Form's Watchmaker Watch. The daughter of Stormy Atlantic gained notoriety after finishing second behind the then-undefeated division leader, Wild Fit, in the Grade 1 Del Mar Debutante. But like Running Lass, Mystery Girl has never gone beyond seven furlongs, although trainer Chris Paasch does not see the extra distance as a problem.

"She was Hip No. 1 in the Ocala Breeders' March sale, and when I saw her the first thing I remember thinking was 'There's a distance horse right there,' " said Paasch, who purchased Mystery Girl for $130,000 at Ocala for owner Charles Cono.

Mystery Girl drew post 3 and figures to have a nice trip under jockey Jon Court, just behind the speed of Running Lass and Stolen Prayer.

has already proved her mettle around two turns, winning her maiden in the one-mile Lindsay Frolic Stakes on Sept. 3 before returning three weeks later to capture the Brave Raj Breeders' Cup at one mile and 70 yards. Both victories came at the expense of A Sea Trippi, who is also entered in the My Dear Girl.

"There's enough speed in the race that it should set up for us," said Barry Rose, who trains Mia's Reflection. "I know my horse will get the distance, but I'm not sure how some of the others will take two turns."

Manoel Cruz, who lost the mount on Running Lass despite riding her to each of her four previous wins, could extract a measure of revenge in the My Dear Girl as the rider on Mia's Reflection.